Sunday, October 21, 2007

Anti-war Republicans Get To Pay

If you were a Republican Congressman who failed to back the Iraq war or opposed it, the Party is making sure there's a price to be paid. So there is a clear understanding of what these folks have done the results of a recent CBS poll show this: 58% of Republicans approve of BushCo's handling of the war, 20% of Independents and 5% of Democrats see it the same way. Those numbers bode ill for an anti-war Republican in a Primary fight, the General Election might be an entirely different story; but it sure is important to save America from whatever this week's Iraqi evil is.

Rep Walter B Jones Jr (R-NC) is one, Joe McLaughlin, county commissioner and retired Army major, is pushing hard. In Jones' 6 terms he's never had a primary opponent and is now being deserted by GOP officials all across the district while McLaughlin has this to say,


"His is a message of despair, a message of defeat," McLaughlin told the appreciative crowd as he derided Jones, accusing him of abandoning the troops, President Bush, even talk-show host Rush Limbaugh. Per LA Times.
Jones has taken on the task of writing letters to the families of every service member killed in Iraq to honor their service. A constituent who disagrees with Jones on the war plans to vote for him stating that for some it's just a job but for Jones it is a service. It is shaping up to be a tough primary for Jones, who stated his view on the matter thus:
"The Kool-Aid drinkers, those who don't know the truth, who only hear the half-truths and the opinions of a Rush Limbaugh, they believe it. But I know too many" voters. When my days end in Congress, I would rather be able to say I did what was right for America, rather than my party did this, my party did that."
It's been pointed out to me that I'm pretty rough on Republicans, OK, I surely do loath some of them, but while there might be plenty of points of disagreement between myself and Rep Jones, I do respect him.

It isn't only lowly Representatives who've gotten in trouble with the Party faithful, Sen Chuck Hagel (R-NE) watched primary opponent Atty Gen Jon Bruning's lead jump from 9 to 24 percent when voters were told of Hagel's criticism of George II and support for the Democratic withdrawal plan. Hagel no longer intends to run.

Rep Ric Keller (R-FL) is a "white flag Republican" for opposing the troop surge and faces two primary opponents. Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD), a Vietnam vet who joined Democrats in pull out votes, faces a well funded primary opponent who has the support of many GOP officials including former Gov Robt. L Erlich.

If you've wondered why GOP Congressmen have defied national sentiment on the Iraq war, these folks are examples. What ever the General Elections might hold, they have to get past Primaries to have a shot...it doesn't look like some of them will. Before Democrats begin to crow about seat pick ups it would be smart to recognize that these people represent the principled opposition, reasonable people to deal with and their replacements in hard (R) districts will be something else entirely. It must suck to be a Republican.

3 comments:

Kevin said...

This is North Carolina we're talking about...

I sometimes wonder if the country might not have been much better off letting the Confederate states secede.

Of course they started the war and we were justified in kicking their asses first. But then maybe we ought to have just cut them lose. I mean, look at all the trouble they've causes us since!!

Zak J. said...

There was an op-ed piece in the Oregonian today by 12 ex-captains who've all recently left the service. They were stoic & reserved, as is typical of our military, whose officers--correctly--see their job as carrying out foreign policy not setting it. It was largely a cool, dispassionate appraisal of what is going on in Iraq and as they saw it our choices there came down to two:

1) Leave. Their professional opinion is that we have never had enough troops to control the country & impose our vision on it and--surge b.s. included--we still dont.
2) Institute the draft. At this point drastically increasing the size of the military beyond its current size is the only way to get enough troops in play to secure the country.

I agree with them completely and seriously feel anyone who doesn't--and who still supports the president's Iraq strategy--just isn't paying attention. I can actualy respect someone who proposes an aggressive foreign policy and an aggressive use of military power. But not when they aren't willing to pay the cost such a policy through funding, shared sacrifice, and volunteerism. We've got national guard troops on their third tours over there and "stop-loss" still in effect. Even with these measures sustaining battle-ready troops and equipment in the field even at pre-surge level will not be possible beyond next February according to every analyst I've heard. Yet 58% of Republicans according to your numbers support not just the president, but his policies--policies that have screwed over our troops in the field, in the hospitals, and over their promised benefits and care when they return.

There won't be a draft--even the vaunted College Republicans would baulk at that. So the military won't be getting staffed to the level required to run to simultaneous foreign adventures at the same time. That leaves withdrawal as the only option, regardless of whether the next president is more akin to Gandi or to Genghiz Khan. The question is only how we do it and how bad of a mess we leave in the wake of our withdrawal.

That 58% of Republicians support the president & their leadership for getting us to this point and for so abusing the trust our soldiers and marines put in their civilian leadership is simply astonishing. The only explanation I can think of for it is that their partisanship and hatred for the American left is more important to them than any regard for our troops, our success in the figth against international terrorism, or nation's standing in the world. The former writer suggested that we shouldn't have fought the civil war; but when I see blind allegance like this, I have to wonder if we ever stopped fighting it.

Chuck Butcher said...

A lot of Democrats miss the fact that there is a domestic war going on, it has been going on for quite a few years now. I do not advocate the scorched earth policy of the Republican politians, but it is time to at least see it and stand up to it.

To be sure, this blog is psy-ops, I sit at the keyboard and try to rev you up, I don't lie to you, but I don't mind being inflammatory. So, let's go ahead and kick their asses for them - they'll even help us if we let them.